Code Section Group

Government Code - GOV

TITLE 1. GENERAL [100 - 7931.000]

  ( Title 1 enacted by Stats. 1943, Ch. 134. )


  ( Division 4 enacted by Stats. 1943, Ch. 134. )

CHAPTER 10.7. Meeting and Negotiating in Public Educational Employment [3540 - 3549.3]

  ( Chapter 10.7 added by Stats. 1975, Ch. 961. )

ARTICLE 2. Administration [3541 - 3541.5]
  ( Article 2 added by Stats. 1975, Ch. 961. )


(a) There is in state government the Public Employment Relations Board which shall be independent of any state agency and shall consist of five members. The members of the board shall be appointed by the Governor by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. One of the original members shall be chosen for a term of one year, one for a term of three years, and one for a term of five years. The first term for the two new members of the board resulting from the expansion of the board to five members shall be reduced by the Governor as necessary so that the term of only one member of the board shall expire in any given year. Thereafter, terms shall be for a period of five years, except that any person chosen to fill a vacancy shall be appointed only for the unexpired term of the member whom he or she succeeds. Members of the board shall be eligible for reappointment. The Governor shall select one member to serve as chairperson. A member of the board may be removed by the Governor upon notice and hearing for neglect of duty or malfeasance in office, but for no other cause.

(b) A vacancy in the board shall not impair the right of the remaining members to exercise all the powers of the commission, and three members of the board shall at all times constitute a quorum.

(c) The board may delegate its powers to any group of three or more board members. Nothing shall preclude any board member from participating in any case pending before the board.

(d) Members of the board shall hold no other public office in the state, and shall not receive any other compensation for services rendered.

(e) Each member of the board shall receive the salary provided for by Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 11550) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2. In addition to his or her salary, each member of the board shall be reimbursed for all actual and necessary expenses incurred by him or her in the performance of his or her duties, subject to the rules of the Department of Human Resources relative to the payment of these expenses to state officers generally.

(f) The board shall appoint an executive director who shall be the chief administrative officer. The executive director shall appoint other persons that may, from time to time, be deemed necessary for the performance of the board’s administrative functions, prescribe their duties, fix their compensation, and provide for reimbursement of their expenses in the amounts made available therefor by appropriation. The executive director shall be a person familiar with employer-employee relations. The executive director shall be subject to removal at the pleasure of the board. The Governor shall appoint a general counsel, upon the recommendation of the board, to assist the board in the performance of its functions under this chapter. The general counsel shall serve at the pleasure of the board.

(g) The executive director and general counsel serving the board on December 31, 1977, shall become employees of the Public Employment Relations Board and shall continue to serve at the discretion of the board. A person so employed may, independently of the Attorney General, represent the board in any litigation or other matter pending in a court of law to which the board is a party or in which it is otherwise interested.

(h) The Governor shall appoint one legal adviser for each member of the board upon the recommendation of that board member. Each appointee shall serve at the pleasure of the recommending board member and shall receive a salary as shall be fixed by the board with the approval of the Department of Human Resources.

(i) Attorneys serving the board on May 19, 1978, shall not be appointed as legal advisers to board members pursuant to subdivision (h) until the time that they have attained permanent civil service status.

(j) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the member of the board appointed by the Governor for the term beginning on January 1, 1991, shall not be subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.

(Amended by Stats. 2012, Ch. 665, Sec. 39. (SB 1308) Effective January 1, 2013.)


The board shall have all of the following powers and duties:

(a) To determine in disputed cases, or otherwise approve, appropriate units.

(b) To determine in disputed cases whether a particular item is within or without the scope of representation.

(c) To arrange for and supervise representation elections that shall be conducted by means of secret ballot elections, and certify the results of the elections.

(d) To establish lists of persons broadly representative of the public and qualified by experience to be available to serve as mediators, arbitrators, or factfinders.

(e) To establish by regulation appropriate procedures for review of proposals to change unit determinations.

(f) Within its discretion, to conduct studies relating to employer-employee relations, including the collection, analysis, and making available of data relating to wages, benefits, and employment practices in public and private employment, and, when it appears necessary in its judgment to the accomplishment of the purposes of this chapter, recommend legislation. The board shall report to the Legislature by October 15 of each year on its activities during the immediately preceding fiscal year. The board may enter into contracts to develop and maintain research and training programs designed to assist public employers and employee organizations in the discharge of their mutual responsibilities under this chapter.

(g) To adopt, pursuant to Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2, rules and regulations to carry out the provisions and effectuate the purposes and policies of this chapter.

(h) To hold hearings, subpoena witnesses, administer oaths, take the testimony or deposition of any person, and, in connection therewith, to issue subpoenas duces tecum to require the production and examination of any employer’s or employee organization’s records, books, or papers relating to any matter within its jurisdiction. Notwithstanding Section 11425.10, Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 11400) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 does not apply to a hearing by the board under this chapter, except a hearing to determine an unfair practice charge.

(i) To investigate unfair practice charges or alleged violations of this chapter, and take any action and make any determinations in respect of these charges or alleged violations as the board deems necessary to effectuate the policies of this chapter, except that in an action to recover damages due to an unlawful strike, the board shall have no authority to award strike-preparation expenses as damages, and shall have no authority to award damages for costs, expenses, or revenue losses incurred during, or as a consequence of, an unlawful strike.

(j) To bring an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to enforce any of its orders, decisions, or rulings, or to enforce the refusal to obey a subpoena. Upon issuance of a complaint charging that any person has engaged in or is engaging in an unfair practice, the board may petition the court for appropriate temporary relief or restraining order.

(k) To delegate its powers to any member of the board or to any person appointed by the board for the performance of its functions, except that no fewer than two board members may participate in the determination of any ruling or decision on the merits of any dispute coming before it, and except that a decision to refuse to issue a complaint shall require the approval of two board members.

(l) To decide contested matters involving recognition, certification, or decertification of employee organizations.

(m) To consider and decide issues relating to rights, privileges, and duties of an employee organization in the event of a merger, amalgamation, or transfer of jurisdiction between two or more employee organizations.

(n) To take any other action as the board deems necessary to discharge its powers and duties and otherwise to effectuate the purposes of this chapter.

(Amended by Stats. 2012, Ch. 46, Sec. 9. (SB 1038) Effective June 27, 2012.)


Notwithstanding any other law, if a decision by an administrative law judge regarding the recognition or certification of an employee organization as described in subdivision (l) of Section 3541.3 is appealed, the decision shall be deemed the final order of the board if the board does not issue a ruling that supersedes the decision on or before 180 days after the appeal is filed.

(Added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 242, Sec. 3. (SB 609) Effective January 1, 2012.)


Any person who shall willfully resist, prevent, impede or interfere with any member of the board, or any of its agents, in the performance of duties pursuant to this chapter, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000).

(Added by Stats. 1975, Ch. 961.)


The initial determination as to whether the charges of unfair practices are justified, and, if so, what remedy is necessary to effectuate the purposes of this chapter, shall be a matter within the exclusive jurisdiction of the board. Procedures for investigating, hearing, and deciding these cases shall be devised and promulgated by the board and shall include all of the following:

(a) Any employee, employee organization, or employer shall have the right to file an unfair practice charge, except that the board shall not do either of the following:

(1) Issue a complaint in respect of any charge based upon an alleged unfair practice occurring more than six months prior to the filing of the charge.

(2) Issue a complaint against conduct also prohibited by the provisions of the agreement between the parties until the grievance machinery of the agreement, if it exists and covers the matter at issue, has been exhausted, either by settlement or binding arbitration. However, when the charging party demonstrates that resort to contract grievance procedure would be futile, exhaustion shall not be necessary. The board shall have discretionary jurisdiction to review the settlement or arbitration award reached pursuant to the grievance machinery solely for the purpose of determining whether it is repugnant to the purposes of this chapter. If the board finds that the settlement or arbitration award is repugnant to the purposes of this chapter, it shall issue a complaint on the basis of a timely filed charge, and hear and decide the case on the merits. Otherwise, it shall dismiss the charge. The board shall, in determining whether the charge was timely filed, consider the six-month limitation set forth in this subdivision to have been tolled during the time it took the charging party to exhaust the grievance machinery.

(b) The board shall not have the authority to enforce agreements between the parties, and shall not issue a complaint on any charge based on alleged violation of any agreement that would not also constitute an unfair practice under this chapter.

(c) The board shall have the power to issue a decision and order directing an offending party to cease and desist from the unfair practice and to take such affirmative action, including but not limited to the reinstatement of employees with or without back pay, as will effectuate the policies of this chapter.

(Amended by Stats. 1986, Ch. 248, Sec. 48.)

GOVGovernment Code - GOV2.